Content » Vol 48, Issue 5

Review article

Clinical relevance of the effects of reach-to-grasp training using trunk restraint in individuals with hemiparesis poststroke: A systematic review

Andrea Greisberger, Hanna Aviv, Sven F. Garbade, Gudrun Diermayr
Department of Physical Therapy, University of Applied Sciences FH Campus Wien, Vienna, Austria. E-mail:
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-2077


Objective: To evaluate the evidence for, and clinical relevance of, immediate and long-term effects of trunk restraint during reach-to-grasp training poststroke on movement patterns and functional abilities within the framework of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health.
Data sources: PubMed, Web of Science, CINAHL, Embase, PEDro, Cochrane Library (publication dates January 1985 to March 2015).
Study selection: Randomized controlled trials comparing training using trunk restraint with any other exercise training.
Data extraction: Data were extracted by one researcher and checked by two other researchers. The Cochrane Collaboration’s tool for assessing risk of bias and the Physiotherapy Evidence Database scale were used by two researchers to assess study quality and risk of bias.
Data synthesis: Eight studies met the inclusion criteria. Five studies found better recovery of movement patterns (trunk displacement, elbow extension, and/or shoulder flexion – body function/structure) at post-test in the experimental compared with the control groups. Functional abilities (activity/participation) improved more in the experimental groups in 3 studies at post-test. Long-term effects were found in one study after 4 weeks.
Conclusion: Trunk restraint has immediate and some long-term effects in adults with chronic stroke. However, these effects are not consistently clinically relevant when referring to minimal detectable change or minimal clinically important difference values.

Lay Abstract


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